The Second One

I typed an entire post with you this afternoon and it deleted just before I clicked “publish”! Ughh. At least practice makes perfect!!

Thursday marked the end of exams and the end of my sophomore year! I treated myself to a end of semester treat= a heavenly massage! It was the perfect way to relax after a week of tests and studying (and mexican with friends, packing, and way to many HGTV shows.) After my massage I left Starkville for the last time as a student at Mississippi State- whoa! But I am so excited for this summer and fall and everything those two will bring. Praying for a time of growth and preparation this summer. I know it will be a big change but I can’t wait.

As soon as I got back to Collierville, I had to do some rearranging, cleaning, and decorating. I think I’m addicted. My room for the summer is finally settled in and just homey enough. Still trying to convince my dad into adding some hardwood. The homemade goo from elementary school apparently wasn’t supposed to be left on carpet (whoops!) For now, I’m loving this set up. It won’t belong before I’m gathering everything again to move in August!

photo 2photo 1photo 3

 

The wall with the table and lamps really needs a pick me up so I’m planning to recreate this pretty soon!

l_d5376e40-279b-11e2-8a66-f7ad16400008

 

Today has been pretty laid back other than a bootcamp workout my mom & I did this morning. It kicked. our. booties. in the best kind of way! I know I’m going to be extremely sore tomorrow!! But it was nice to have an intense workout in so we could relax for the rest of the day, help Josh find a hat for the torrential down pour known as Beale Street music fest, finish getting everything unpacked and organized, and enjoy Las Delicias for dinner with some Sonic to follow! I’m becoming addicted to their mini Caramel Banana shakes… so good. but so bad. Did I already undo that early morning workout?!

I’m so excited for this tomorrow/weekend! I’ll be heading to Whitney’s first shower tomorrow night! I can’t believe she’ll be getting married in 4 months!

What are your weekend plans?

P.S. A new show is starting on HGTV and I think I’m meant to be the star of it. Renovation Raiders. While the homeowners are out to dinner, a room in their home is renovated!! — I once painted my bathroom while my parents were out to dinner… let me tell you, it looks just lovely. 😉

imgres

Advertisements

A Quick Workout for Busy Days

Travel days are always busy- even when the “traveling” is only 2 hours worth from Starkville to Memphis.

Wednesday was a busy day that involved finishing all my classes for the semester (woohooo!), completing a project, babysitting, and driving home!  Knowing all that the day held, I pulled myself out of bed and headed downstairs even though it was the perfect stormy morning for sleeping in!

I planned on having eggs like I have the last couple days (trying to get more protein), but I just wasn’t feeling it. My belly wanted carbs… in the form of cinnamon cereal. So I went with it. Alongside my cereal, my new mug I got for my birthday filled with coffee from the keurig, 2% milk, and stevia. Thanks Mom!

photo

The almonds and strawberries were a pre workout snack

Even in this busy day, I wanted to get a good workout in (without taking too much of the day) and make use of my new running hat 🙂 Thanks M!

photo

I hit the Sanderson Center after class for this:

Slide1

And let me tell you, my heart was pumping! It felt a lot better to ride in the car knowing I had 3 miles done.

Can you find 40 minutes to get your heart pumping? It’s not so bad if you take the Lifetime app with Army Wives on demand 😉

PS: Have you heard of She Reads Truth?! It is daily devotional for women.. I highly suggest you grab a cup of coffee and head on over there today. A new portion is beginning, with the focus on Hosea. It’s too good to miss. I posted a link on my Facebook this morning- I promise it’s so good.

shereadstruth

celebrating

I couldn’t have asked for a better afternoon/evening! It somehow happened to include most of my favorites! Mitchell and I got into Collierville around 12:30, spent some time at his grandparent’s, then headed to Booyas with my mom! (My all time fave..!)

After Booyas, we had to hit up Target! I tend to have withdrawals while in Starkville with nothing but Walmart! .. It’s rare lately that my mom and I get to go without being in a hurry so this was so much fun!! Thanks Mom

Once we got home, Marley and I went for a quick run before getting ready & heading downtown.

Majestic Grill & Melting Pot were our destinations for the evening! I enjoyed every minute of it! It was so fun to think back on old memories and laugh- It’s crazy to think we’ve spent TWENTY of my birthdays together! So thankful for my parents, grandparents, bros, and M. It feels so clique to say “blessed”… almost even seems like it needs a hashtag before it- haha!- but truly, I am.

3rd birthday together- love it.

3rd birthday together- love it.

After lots of consideration of just about every item on the menu, I decided on Grilled Salmon with a Honey glaze, Sweet Carrots, and Garlic Mashed Potatoes- combined with a few handfuls of their famous parmesan fries we all shared- perfectly satisfying.photo 2

Me and the boys

Me and the boys

My Dad, My Mom, and I

My Dad, My Mom, and I

Nana, Me, and Poppa

Nana, Me, and Poppa

For dessert, we decided on two mixtures for the table. Bananas Foster (which included white chocolate and cinnamon and smelled phenomenal!) and Flaming Turtle (caramel and chocolate, too!- that actually came to the table flaming!). Our “dippers” included fresh strawberries, bananas, graham cracker covered marshmallows, brownies, cheesecake, and red velvet cake!! YUM. We washed it down with coffee. Just like I adore coffee in the morning, I love to have it after dinner.

The Melting Pot

The Melting Pot

Around here, we crack up at how long birthdays last.. it goes from one day to a weekend to a week to a month! So you probably will hear more about my entrance into the twenties before this is over..

More than ready to hit the hay now & wake up for more relaxin tomorrow.

I hope your weekend is awesome! The days pass slow, but the years go to fast.

Sweet Disadvantages

If this reads like a college paper… It’s because it was my actual speech for Intro to Communication… But I think its information you’ll find helpful!

Enjoy… If that’s even possible on a Monday!

25784

Would you purposely ingest a chemical you knew was used to preserve dead animals? 

Due to my love for Diet Dr. Pepper, I was reluctant to believe the crazy facts I am going to share with you. The more I studied artificial sweetener and their effects, the more I realized just how prevalent they are. We are ingesting them everyday from diet soda, yogurt, baked goods and most types of chewing gum. AND it turns out, that Stevia I thought was WAY better than Splenda and Sweet’N’Low… isn’t. Cue crying as I stare at black coffee wondering how to make it drinkable!!

I want to inform you about the history and creation of artificial sweeteners, and how they affect your body in relation to both weight gain and various illnesses.

I constantly debate their pros and cons for my life; the most current health and fitness information had always interested me. I have ironically used these sweeteners for years, done extensive research, and gained knowledge from reliable sources to share with you today.

 I want to start with a slightly frightening story about how “fake sugar” came to be. According to the web article “Artificial Sweeteners – More Dangerous than you ever imagined,” the most popular artificial sweetener on the market, aspartame, was discovered in 1965 completely by mistake!!

    1. Chemist, James Schlatter was attempting to develop a drug to treat ulcer disease when he spilled some of his mixture onto his finger. He licked his finger to clean it off and was amazed to find that the mixture was over 200x sweeter than sugar.

Unfortunately, many chemicals are involved in the making of this white powder; Methylene chloride is one of them; It has many uses, so we come into contact with it often. However, artificial sweeteners are the only form of it ingested. Here’s the crazy part: Prolonged skin contact with methylene chloride can cause chemical burns and dissolving of tissues in the skin. If that isn’t shocking enough, it is often used to strip paint and weld plastic together.

This is what we are coating our insides in.

Soon after the accidental invention, it became apparent that artificial sweetener could be the best thing, financially, that ever happened to the diet industry. All those involved in getting Artificial Sweeteners into our foods were more interested in money signs that human health.

One of the most appealing facts about artificial sweeteners is the fact that they are zero calorie and therefore seem like a perfect ally in the fight against extra pounds. Another plus for many people is the fact that artificial sweeteners can be used in both cooking and baking, making it seem like the most convenient change in diet to save lots of extra calories.

However, more current research argues that this is simply not true. Artificial sweeteners in our systems lead our body to believe we indulged in copious amounts of sugar…

        1. Within minutes, our blood sugar rises.

Then, our bodies start to release leptin and insulin, instructing the body to store fat. Simultaneously, serotonin levels are decreasing; this is the chemical that lets us know we are full.

Consistently ingesting artificial sweeteners creates the perfect environment for weight gain and a greater percentage of fat, despite your greatest weight loss efforts.

The internal consequences can be even worse than extra pounds. Just 10 grams of aspartame, or other similar sweeteners, can cause medical issues. These chemicals in your body often have laxative like effects, bloating and diarrhea. On top of that, you may experience headaches, migraines, mental confusion, dizziness, and seizures.

If you can believe it, there is more.

    1. The FDA strays from informing the general public that research claims worrisome effects, including cancer, due to artificial sweetener are running rampant.

Artificial sweeteners are now being referred to as one of the most dangerous and controversial food additives in human history.

  • It seems the accidental discovery was foretelling the not so sweet weight gain and chronic illness artificial sweeteners can lead to.

Now when you sit down at restaraunts, determine whether you are interested in cancer, migraines, or a few extra pounds before ordering that Diet CokeCoke products are so cerosive, they can be used for hard core cleaning. They say if you leave Coke in your toilet overnight, it will clean better than any other product on the market. Just last week, I used Diet Dr. Pepper to get all that caked on gunk out of my oven!!

Why I still think it’s okay to drink the same thing I clean my oven with… I’ll never know! But I’m working on it!

On a less scary/more exciting note, Spencer has been begging for months to make his blog debut… I figured what better day than today to introduce him! Happy 20th Birthday to this crazy guy. Thanks for always standing up for the blog when Mitchell argues that I slash to many words being a great friend. From Columbus trips in the Dud to hilarious nights playing cards in Destin, life wouldn’t be the same without ya! Keep getting sunburnt. 🙂  I hope your twenties are full of more fun (& trips back to Memphis to hang with us) than you can imagine!

Whitney, Spencer, Me, and Mitchell

Whitney, Spencer, Me, and Mitchell

In My Makeup Bag

Here’s a sneak peek of what my weekend looked like: Makeover after Makeover after Makeover (x5). It was so. much. fun.

The way you look can quickly affect your confidence and how you feel in that moment. I love using the wide assortment of Mary Kay products to make people look, feel, and BE beautiful! Of course, it’s about more than the makeup… I love that MK pushes the lifestyle with God first, Family second, and career last!

Check out just one look Mary Kay products can create:

20130410-DSC_3320

Prior to using any products… only acne present here 😉 No shame.

20130410-DSC_3367The first two steps, used every morning and every night, work together.

Would you believe the Time Wise 3-in-1 cleanser and moisturizer work together to do ELEVEN things? Cleanse, exfoliate, freshen, energize, hydrate, smooth, firm, soften, protect, rebuild, and reduce fine lines and wrinkles. It rightfully won the Good Housekeeping Stamp and is one of our best sellers!!20130410-DSC_3375Concealer always come next, I love that it is lightweight yet long lasting. It also is great that there are so many shades to choose from; something for every face. It helps conceal imperfections such as blemishes, age spots, and under eye circles to create a beautiful flawless face.20130410-DSC_3373I follow it up with Mineral Powder for a natural, matte finish. I love that it gives build-able coverage.This is crazily comparable to Bare Minerals, with a much better price tag!! (Think $28 compared to $16)!!! 20130410-DSC_3335

Can’t forget the blush— gotta have the perfect luminous flush on the cheeks. It makes ya look more alive!

20130410-DSC_337620130410-DSC_3339 20130410-DSC_3340 For the eyes, I start by using “Moonstone” mineral eye shadow all over the eyelid; from the lashes all the way to the brow.

I love to even extend some of this light, all over color around your tear duct… It adds a dewy accent & really makes the eyes look wide awake and pop!

Then, the crease needs some “Chocolate Kiss” to be happy- oh wait, thats us girls once a month 😉20130410-DSC_3343

This deep brown gives depth and warmth to the lids.20130410-DSC_3347 20130410-DSC_3349Finally, when I’m feeling it, I add “Sweet Plum”. It looks like a very deep purple in the tray but adds the perfect accent. 20130410-DSC_3351 20130410-DSC_3350

20130410-DSC_3390

Black eyeliner and Black “Lash Love” mascara unarguably finish out every eye look! (Can I get an amen?!)

Mary Kay’s eyeliner is long wearing, fade resistant, smudge proof, and waterproof. What more can you ask for?

Are you constantly looking for the perfect mascara to wear everyday? I’ve found what you NEED! The secret is a flexible, sculpted brush that separates and coats even fine, hard to reach lashes, with no clumps!!- That is important to me.

20130410-DSC_3392My final step… True Dimensions Lipstick in Natural Beaute’.

I’ve fallen in love with this formula for lipstick. I am not a big lipstick girl… it is always SO drying and I can’t wear without gloss..  MK has finally helped me find this all day, everyday color, that’s moisturizing! It wouldn’t look out of the ordinary with workout clothes but still looks gorgeous with a dress on date night!

It’s becoming a problem… I sell this constantly! I can’t even keep it on the shelf!20130410-DSC_3355The finished face!

20130410-DSC_3357Winning outfit, huh?

As always, a HUGE thanks to JML photography for the product and step by step photos. If you’re in need of any photography (products, family, wedding, maternity) call this dude. He’s kinda awesome.

I hope your weekend was full of relaxation~ I know mine was.

Thanks for reading!

I know that full well

Lately, I feel easily overwhelmed with certain things. Sometimes, the blog feels that way.. so I just push it off for a rainy day. I was attempting to type my latest post when this whole blog thing started to feel incredibly incomplete.

You see, there’s more to the story than you know. With blogging, it is easy to only share the fun stuff. Unfortunately, this can make the author seem “perfect,” simply because I am more likely to post on good days than to share the not so pretty areas of my life on the world wide web. Today, I want to share something with you that will be hard to write down, to catch you all up. But I think it must be done in order for this to be genuine, to build a trust between us. I am a filthy sinner, with a past. I also think it might be less overwhelming for me if it’s on paper and not just swirling in my head. My memory is spotty, but I think it all started around 13.

I wouldn’t call it bullying, but a few comments in the lunchroom to the tune of “ever heard of the Subway diet?” have affected me more than I realized at the time. It was 6th grade, I was 5’2″ and remember wearing a size 6.. Now I know that is not big. AT ALL. But being bigger than most of the other girls was the worst part of all. The most important thing at that age was fitting in. I didn’t make the dance team my sixth grade year, which didn’t help.

By seventh grade, I had naturally grown up and slimmed out some. I got interested in working out, going to spin classes with one of my best friends and the “baby fat” that stayed way to long dropped off without to much effort.

I don’t know where it began, but I think around 9th grade, I became obsessed with my weight and exercise. Self comparison. Numbers. I honestly don’t even remember this time at all… I’ve just found notebooks covered in weights and calorie counts I didn’t even realize I had been keeping track of for so long. I knew, and still know, calorie amounts of almost everything. It’s like a terrible talent.

I remember eating until I was so overly full I couldn’t think of anything else, throwing up just to relieve some of the guilt. No one knew I struggled. I was never out of a normal weight range, so it was an internal battle… between what I knew deep down was right and I let other people, the media, and modern ideals tell me would make me happy. If I wasn’t 120, I wasn’t perfect.

Baby food diet, Drop10, Weight Watchers, Weigh down workshop, calorie counting, bite counting, all fruit, no carbs, all protein, all liquid, you name it, I’ve tried it. For a few hours at least. I am one of the lucky ones. I was able to avoid the worst. I was never determined enough to take any of these extreme ideas for more than a test drive I quickly got out of. I always drifted back to eating normally until the next great idea came along. My weight really never shifted more than a couple pounds.

This post is more for me than for you. It feels like a weight lifted off my chest to get this craziness out of my head. Maybe, sometime, I can help someone escape the harsh reality of how hard eating and body image can be for girls. It was never a topic that was spoken about in my middle and high school years… yet tons of girls around me were all suffering from the same thing.

I don’t have any explanation for you as to why I’m writing this, other than to give you my full history and to get it out of my head. I should be writing my speech on artificial sweeteners, but here I sit, words flowing from my fingers.
I know there is a reason I’m okay with pushing the publish button.

My God is healer. He has removed me so much from this time of my life that the memories, are just that. 

I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; 

your works are wonderful, I know that full well. 

Psalm 139:14

“Normal”

A sweet friend of mine shared this with me over a year ago, and I want to also share it with you.

1

Have a fabulous day- see you soon!

sweet gratitude, III

Trying to slow down more and remember to smell the roses. Sometimes it can be hard to really live in the present, without looking forward with “I can’t wait”s… for me, being thankful for what is going on right now helps.

Loving lately:

warmer weather, eno time,

warmer weather, eno time,

pinterest ideas,

pinterest ideas,

oatmeal and coffee to start my days,

oatmeal and coffee to start my days,

verses God shows me just at the right time,

verses God shows me just at the right time,

fresh picked flowers, walks with friends,

fresh picked flowers, walks with friends,

of course sweet snuggles,

of course sweet snuggles,

and spring wishes!

and spring wishes!

“give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you..”

1 Thessalonians 5:18

From The Happiness Project: Gratitude is important to happiness. Studies show that consistently grateful people are happier and more satisfied with their lives; they even feel more physically healthy and spend more time exercising. Gratitude brings freedom from envy, because when you are grateful for what you have, you are not consumed with wanting something different or something more. That, in turn, makes it easier to live within your means and also to be generous to others.

What are you grateful for this week? Something amazing? Just getting through?

Following Fads

Today I am joining the thousands of ladies in blog world who do something called “What I Ate Wednesday” every week! I will simply let you know what I ate in words and pictures, usually the iPhone variety! This type of post is hog heaven for the nosy girl like me, but if it’s not your thing (or your name is Mitchell- I can see his eyes rolling now!) move on. Check out my next post instead.

WIAWbutton

Pop on over to peasandcrayons.com to check out all of her WIAW posts! She has 115…

I’m promising you my best effort at being consistent with this…. (yes, I know, I owe you a gratitude post!) Be patient with me as I finish up these last few weeks of school & exams then this summer the blog will be back in focus, the eats will be better, and this girl a little less stressed. 😉

image.j1pegWednesday mornings start out at coffee shops with 5 girls and the Word. I enjoyed a caramel latte & called it the appetizer to breakfast. I never want to eat breakfast at 7 because by 11 I feel like I could eat my desk.
3

About 9 am I was ready for stove cooked oats. They weren’t quite like my moms bu still a stick to your ribs morning meal. I topped them with part of a banana, cinnamon, stevia, and honey straight from my pot!

2

While the oats cooked, I cut up a pink lady to have with lunch and dusted her with cinnamon. Yes, her. She is a lady.6

It went perfectly with my string cheese & Chick-fil-a grilled chicken sandwich… a star of a choice if you need healthy and fast food. It’s just 290 calories for lots of protein and fullness! Honey roasted bbq sauce is not good for you, just to die for.

7

As we were finishing, we were offered extras from a milkshake they sold so Mitchell and I obliged and I had just a few sips.

8

While I worked on setting up some Mary Kay appointments I enjoyed a bowl of honey nut cheerios & milk… a never fail combo in my mind. Not specifically Honey Nut Cheerios, just any cereal.

11

Then there came a “I’m so hungry I’ll eat anything.. I ate it so quick this was the only part left for a picture” snack while I worked. Not the greatest choice, but this post is the real deal! No deleting packs of cinnamon teddy grahams!
image

Dinner was the highlight today! It turned out awesome… definitely will become a recurring meal! Taco Chicken Bowls!! Found the recipe here.

Unpictured: the cinnabon roll and cookie I wholeheartedly earned with a 7 mile run licked the plate beneath

What graced your plate today?

Where Have You Been?

I’ve obviously been slacking on my blogging game lately! My mind has gone from being overwhelmed with school after 10 days of Spring Break to being overwhelmed with wanting to go home for Easter! Couldn’t be happier that I will be back in the 901 tomorrow.

Luckily, things around here have been pretty productive! The last two days this  week I managed to get my booty off the couch and onto the hamster wheel for the first two days of Couch to 5k! It feels way better to get my heart pumping (& get the fit bit saying 10,000) than to sit on the couch all afternoon, but that sure is hard to be reminded of while I’m on the couch!

bloggin

Also, been trying to keep this dude organized aka a full time job! He’s gone from just starting photography around November to booking engagement shoots, business projects (for the Wall Street Journal, what?!!), and multiple weddings! I’ve become the employed assistant since I tend to be more of the planner type.

24423_551807191506330_230648654_n

My Mary Kay business has taken off & I am having so much fun! Just in the past week I’ve had 5 orders placed. And I was able to place my first big order thanks to Mom & Nana! I decided to use my birthday money as a sort of investment to get all stocked with awesome MK products to sell (& use myself too!) Thrilled to open the box when it arrives Thursday & share with ya’ll!

Did you catch that? My birthday is in 26 days.. I’ll be twenty! What on earth? Twenty year olds have it all together… Or so I thought! I feel like that number is way older than I feel!

What happened to being 2 & Baby Bop cakes?

What happened to being 2 & Baby Bop cakes?

There is so much jam packed into these last 5 weeks of school! I can hardly get a steady hold on the fact that in 20 class days I will be saying goodbye to Starkville & hello to Memphis! I can hardly contain my excitement. With summer comes sunshine, swimming, a Virginia trip, a florida trip, & lots of relaxin!

Please take a second to pray for this sweet little dude, Knox. He’s just over 2 years old and we spent lots of last summer together hittin up Target and snugglin’ Marley.

If you follow me on instagram, you already saw that he is at LeBonheur after having a few seizures yesterday for unknown reasons.

Pray for comfort for his momma and peace and healing for his little body. Thank you!

SONY DSC

Expect a vlog tomorrow on my favorite products… Not just makeup, but dishwashing detergent, nail polish, & more!

See ya then. xoxo.